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  #21  
Old 6 October 2018, 09:50
Bodiebot Bodiebot is offline
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I spoke to Luke yesterday, he straight up said don't believe everything you read. My reply was you got Paul Manaforted he said thats exactly what happened. He has always been straight and honest about what was going on when asked. Call or email him he will answer any questions you have.
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  #22  
Old 6 October 2018, 22:48
pm410 pm410 is offline
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Originally Posted by Bodiebot View Post
I spoke to Luke yesterday, he straight up said don't believe everything you read. My reply was you got Paul Manaforted he said thats exactly what happened. He has always been straight and honest about what was going on when asked. Call or email him he will answer any questions you have.
And every target of a RICO case I’ve indicted have also professed their innocence. I’m sorry, but I’ve worked around the federal legal system long enough to know that they will not move forward without a rock solid case. The level of investigation and resources that go into a federal case as opposed to a state case is also night and day. Not to mention, Paul Manafort was guilty as hell, it’s just the investigation on him stemmed from what could be argued as an overreach from an initial inquiry.
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  #23  
Old 7 October 2018, 00:22
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Sltwtr1 Sltwtr1 is offline
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Originally Posted by pm410 View Post
And every target of a RICO case I’ve indicted have also professed their innocence. I’m sorry, but I’ve worked around the federal legal system long enough to know that they will not move forward without a rock solid case. The level of investigation and resources that go into a federal case as opposed to a state case is also night and day. Not to mention, Paul Manafort was guilty as hell, it’s just the investigation on him stemmed from what could be argued as an overreach from an initial inquiry.
So according to your rational if Federal Charges are brought, we might as well get rid of due process and the person is automatically guilty because the AUSA would never bring a case unless it was 100%.

Thank God we have a Constitution and some AUSA or a bunch of Feds don't get to be Agent, Prosecutor and Judge.

There are book-loads of cases where there has been Federal overreach, or the subject was found not guilty or the Feds didn't use proper checks and balances.

I and many here have posted these cases here over the years. DEA cases, FBI cases.

The fact is, and you should know this. Special Agents and 1811 agencies are stat based. If you are an SA and you want to get that promotion or cushy job posting you better be making cases and successful prosecutions. No one would ever say it is a "quota" but it really is.. Hence many SAs hate CT and intel assignments because it is very hard to make arrests and successful prosecutions. These are the stats that these agencies go to Congress with and say, hey, look, we made 500 arrests and 80% guilty rate and approve our request for 1 Billion dollars etc.

If you don't think there is a strategic use of charges at the Federal level just like there is at the street cop level.. The guys on your task force or the AUSAs have not been honest with you.

Having a guy plead "guilty" is almost better than being found guilty in trial. If you go to trial, A) you might lose, B) A hell of a lot more work.

If I can put a shit load of charges on guys or justify expanding the "conspiracy". I can bet one of those guys will probably flip or plead. Regardless, a guilty plea in a Federal case is a great stat and having a cooperative witness to get a bigger fish is a good thing to get the bigger fish stat.

Maybe your Task Force and the AUSA is a bunch of lily white Boy Scouts and honest Indians. There are thousands of SAs throughout the US and many AUSAs. They are all human, and not all are perfect. They are all under a lot of pressure to make cases.

This does not go to whether or not Luke is guilty or innocent. It goes to you coming on here and saying that the FBI and the AUSAs are so infallible that he is obviously guilty and anyone charged with RICO is automatically guilty. The FBI can be/was a fucked up agency in some aspects even before this current FBI shit storm. You better have a good AUSA to be a check and balance. On a different note it appears there was no check and balance on FISA....

Back to Luke, I spoke to him today via e-mail. He is coming on here. He confirmed that many "facts" in that article are not accurate.

Last point on the general topic of pleading guilty: If I was wrongly accused by the Feds with the full weight and money of the Fed Govt coming down on me, and "if" found guilty, I would spend 20 yrs or life in prison and my attorney recommended the plea so as to not take the gamble, it is something I would have to think long and hard about... 20 yrs in Fed Prison, $150K legal bill, vs 18 month in a country club prison, 5 yrs probation and a $20K legal bill etc..

It seems like we are forgetting on this country on a national level and on this board that you are innocent until proven guilty.

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  #24  
Old 7 October 2018, 02:41
Dino0311 Dino0311 is offline
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Dude he literally plead guilty and admitted to money laundering. I'm not sure what higher level of proof you're looking for. He may be a good dude and good accountant but he's also an admitted felon who flipped for a lighter sentence.

I have some direct experience with the FBI and AUSAs. In the case I'm most directly familiar with they were ruthless but factually accurate.

Like PM104 alluded to, the feds skim off the most provable serious cases and focus their resources on it. Our state and local drug units almost act as a farm team, feeding the best cases to the feds.
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  #25  
Old 7 October 2018, 12:48
bobmueller bobmueller is offline
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Out of 2,277 wrongful convictions logged by the UM School of Law, 282 of them involved false confessions. Innocent people take plea deals for lots of reasons. I don't know if that's what happened here. I'm just pointing out that pleading guilty doesn't always mean the person is guilty.
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  #26  
Old 7 October 2018, 13:56
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Dude he literally plead guilty and admitted to money laundering. I'm not sure what higher level of proof you're looking for. He may be a good dude and good accountant but he's also an admitted felon who flipped for a lighter sentence.

I have some direct experience with the FBI and AUSAs. In the case I'm most directly familiar with they were ruthless but factually accurate.

Like PM104 alluded to, the feds skim off the most provable serious cases and focus their resources on it. Our state and local drug units almost act as a farm team, feeding the best cases to the feds.
Ok: 1). I stated that my post was not related specifically to Luke's guilt or innocence. I was making the point that PM104 basically said if the Feds will even bring RICO charges you are guilty or they wouldn't bring them in the first place.

2.) Luke plead out. I also stated in my post that with the weight of the FED Govt bearing down on you, ANYONE would have to think long and hard whether to take a gamble and go to trial, if you even have the resources or plea out.

3.) I also pointed out that prosecutors overcharge with the intent of gaining cooperative witnesses or hoping defendants will plea.

This is a good article about this, only one of many. Part of it has to do with a case up your way.

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics...-lives/267360/

https://www.wired.com/2013/01/doj-br...-aaron-swartz/

https://www.theatlantic.com/national...swartz/267224/


Quote:
Senator John Cornyn is pressing for an investigation into whether the U.S. Attorney's Office in Boston inappropriately targeted the 26-year-old Reddit co-founder. Rep. Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, wants to look into the case too. Said Rep. Zoe Lofgren, "I think the Department of Justice was way out of line on the case."


Quote:
By and large, American prosecutors no longer fight their cases at trial. The new dispensation is justice by plea bargain. The more savage the penalties prosecutors can threaten, the more likely the defendant (guilty or innocent) is to speed things along by pleading guilty and accepting a light penalty. According to the Wall Street Journal, Swartz was offered the choice of pleading guilty and going to jail for six to eight months, or else going to trial and taking his chances. The multiple counts and their absurdly savage sentences are best seen, just as the family said, as instruments of intimidation.


There are many many such examples.

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Last edited by Sltwtr1; 7 October 2018 at 14:18.
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  #27  
Old 7 October 2018, 16:52
pm410 pm410 is offline
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When it comes to RICO indictments, there’s a very, very, small percentage of people who fight these charges and win. That is because racketeering cases go through several vetting processes before they’re indicted. It will go through the UASA and up their CoC and same for the SA and their GS. Sure, there can be overreaching to obtain cooperation, however it’s not innocent people or they wouldn’t have information to cooperate with. What my point is, is that for every one federal racketeering indictment you show me where an individual is wrongly charged, there’s 100 who’ve been correctly prosecuted. Maintaining a conviction rate on 93% on OCEDETF investigations says something. Also, as it pertains to Mr. Fairfield, you are inclined to believe him just because he says so? Again, I’d prefer to review the actual evidence they possess as opposed to taking the convicted offenders word. Maybe he’s the 1 in 100, I just have a hard time believing it.
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  #28  
Old 7 October 2018, 20:44
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When it comes to RICO indictments, there’s a very, very, small percentage of people who fight these charges and win. That is because racketeering cases go through several vetting processes before they’re indicted. It will go through the UASA and up their CoC and same for the SA and their GS. Sure, there can be overreaching to obtain cooperation, however it’s not innocent people or they wouldn’t have information to cooperate with. What my point is, is that for every one federal racketeering indictment you show me where an individual is wrongly charged, there’s 100 who’ve been correctly prosecuted. Maintaining a conviction rate on 93% on OCEDETF investigations says something. Also, as it pertains to Mr. Fairfield, you are inclined to believe him just because he says so? Again, I’d prefer to review the actual evidence they possess as opposed to taking the convicted offenders word. Maybe he’s the 1 in 100, I just have a hard time believing it.
Let me start by saying I have never stated if I thought Luke was innocent or guilty. That was not the point of my posts.

The point of my posts is your contention, that you continue in the above post, that if charges are brought in a RICO case, the person is guilty. (I am summarizing but that is how it comes across).

It is a fundamentally flawed thought process that you put that much faith in one side of Govt.

Just because so few people fight and win these cases doesn't equate to the premise that they are guilty unless the charges would have never been brought.

Have you seen Molly's game or read the book? The part about the RICO charges and what they started out accusing her of and what the Judges comments were and her ultimate sentencing were NIGHT and DAY. She took a rake on a game and they accused her of RICO... Read about that whole thing and you will see it was BS and they were just pressuring her. ( I understand it is a Movie and book but that part is verified as accurate-- well apart from her lawyer in real life was white and in the movie black and the Judge's comments about Wall st.)

Did you miss my posts and all the supporting articles about people pleading out just because it is extremely difficult to fight the Federal Govt and take the Gamble of not beating the overcharging or BS charges or not having the resources.

There is nothing in our form of Govt that says because AUSAs or SAs or SACs SSAs, etc have to pass "supposed" layers of internal vetting and checks and balances before charges are brought that a person is guilty.

You keep reversing the fundamental principal that the Prosecutor office and SAs do not determine guilt or innocence, they present the case and that is it. At least your comments give that impression.

In Luke's specific case, (which I have not commented one way or the other to his guilt or innocence) he plead out.

That means only the sentencing went to the judge. A Judge did not find him guilty. The sentencing reflected in the article is not accurate according to Luke and it was/is much less.

I will contest your assertion to the ends of the earth that just because there was a lot of supposed approvals and vetting on one side of the process that, that relates to the person being guilty 99 times out of 100.

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  #29  
Old 7 October 2018, 22:42
pm410 pm410 is offline
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I understand your point, but I am relaying my opinion from personal experience. While my opinion isn't anything I'd argue in a legal journal or defend as being academically sound, it is something that I personally believe.
It's always been the saying, at least for the District of Maryland, that the Feds will not adopt a case that they aren't certain they'll win. The amount of evidence that we must provide the AUSA before they'll entertain indicting is leaps and bounds over what the State requires to charge or prosecute. For that reason, my comfort in knowing that the likelihood of the targeted individual being guilty of the alleged crime is much stronger in the Federal system than it is in the State. While I'm not implying the AUSA is judge and jury, I am correlating their high conviction rate to the conclusion that most people they prosecute are likely guilty. By their listed statistics, 93% are guilty of their charged crime, and 7% are not. Now, that obviously doesn't take into account those who in all actuality are innocent and plead guilty for a reduced sentence, nor does it account for those who are guilty but are acquitted on a technicality. Obviously, those situations can't be quantified as there's no way to identify them with any certainty. But based on the numbers presented along with my personal experience, I'd feel comfortable saying that most people indicted on federal charges are guilty to some degree (as I do believe overcharging to force cooperation is common) of their alleged crimes.
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  #30  
Old 8 October 2018, 03:01
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Looking forward to Luke coming on here to have his say.

Not looking forward to telling the friends I've referred to him, that they'll need a new accountant for their 2018 returns.
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  #31  
Old 8 October 2018, 05:50
Jong Jong is online now
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Luke has been my accountant for 11 years and has done an outstanding job. I don't know much about legal matters but he did tell me he might be doing home confinement or work release so I'm assuming the Feds don't think he is all that bad of a guy.

My question is how would an accountant know the money he is dealing with has been gained through legal means?

He's said he thought his client earned his money through online gambling. How would he know it wasn't?

Thinking back when I used to get a paycheck from an overseas company the only way he knew how much I made or whether it was legal or not was because I told him. I could've easily made it all up.
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  #32  
Old 8 October 2018, 09:14
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while some (many) may not want a felon doing your taxes...

you guys do realize that there is no requirement that the person you hire to do your taxes for you be a CPA?

IF he ends up on home confinement/work release, assuming one of the stipulations of his sentencing isnt that he is prohibited from any accounting work.. there is no reason he couldnt continue to work personal tax returns for those inclined to continue to use him...

Im neither advocating this, or encouraging it.. Im married to an accountant, so I have never had to hire one for tax purposes..

Just putting it out there for those concerned about "what next???" when it comes to your 2018 filing..
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  #33  
Old 8 October 2018, 09:17
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Jong, look at the source of the money coming into the account. What bank/“casino,” what country, who (person), etc... Also did it come from a known sanctioned business/person/country (there are official websites to check).
Did it come from one of the client’s own (shell) company?

I don’t know this guy at all. But I do know money laundering. This guy is a convicted felon, do you trust him with your shit now?
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  #34  
Old 8 October 2018, 09:27
Bodiebot Bodiebot is offline
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Jong, look at the source of the money coming into the account. What bank/“casino,” what country, who (person), etc... Also did it come from a known sanctioned business/person/country (there are official websites to check).
Did it come from one of the client’s own (shell) company?

I don’t know this guy at all. But I do know money laundering. This guy is a convicted felon, do you trust him with your shit now?

I am actually sending my stuff to him today.
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  #35  
Old 8 October 2018, 09:57
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Originally Posted by btq96r View Post
Looking forward to Luke coming on here to have his say.

Not looking forward to telling the friends I've referred to him, that they'll need a new accountant for their 2018 returns.
Luke told me the other day he really doesnt do all the work anyway. It is people in his firm and then he looks over it.

I am just going to use his partner and should be seamless.

In other words, just keep sending same same and might be Chris reviewing it but shouldnt be much noticable change if what I am hearing is correct.

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  #36  
Old 8 October 2018, 10:07
Jong Jong is online now
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Jong, look at the source of the money coming into the account. What bank/“casino,” what country, who (person), etc... Also did it come from a known sanctioned business/person/country (there are official websites to check).
Did it come from one of the client’s own (shell) company?

I don’t know this guy at all. But I do know money laundering. This guy is a convicted felon, do you trust him with your shit now?
But Luke never saw any of that. All he saw was some pdf files of what I earned and if I was getting a refund what bank account to have the money deposited into. He has never had access to any of my bank accounts because he had no need to. It would have been super simple to have made up the pdf files to show that was where my money was coming from.
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Put a small child in a playpen with an apple and a bunny. If s/he eats the apple and plays with the bunny, s/he's normal;but if s/he eats the bunny and plays with the apple, I'll buy you a new car. Somewhere along the line we must have been TAUGHT to do the wrong thing.

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  #37  
Old 8 October 2018, 11:44
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But Luke never saw any of that. All he saw was some pdf files of what I earned and if I was getting a refund what bank account to have the money deposited into. He has never had access to any of my bank accounts because he had no need to. It would have been super simple to have made up the pdf files to show that was where my money was coming from.
That was for your account. You do not know (nor I) what he saw in the ones he was convicted for. As an accountant he must know the "color" (source) of the money.

You (as well as me and everyone else on this site) are small potatoes, we don't move multi-millions of dollars on a daily-weekly-monthly basis. There are ways of moving legal money with no issues, you just have to explain it. There are ways to move illicit money through structuring, layering, shell companies, off shore and here, etc... From what I saw he was using some of these techniques.
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  #38  
Old 8 October 2018, 11:59
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^I understand that. I do plan on using him through his company because he has done an outstanding job and I figured if he was going to screw me over would've done it by now. One of the things I've always been able to count on in the last 11 years is if I had any question, he would answer it fairly quickly even on the weekends.
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Put a small child in a playpen with an apple and a bunny. If s/he eats the apple and plays with the bunny, s/he's normal;but if s/he eats the bunny and plays with the apple, I'll buy you a new car. Somewhere along the line we must have been TAUGHT to do the wrong thing.

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  #39  
Old 8 October 2018, 13:17
LukeFairfieldCPA LukeFairfieldCPA is offline
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Exclamation Luke Fairfield, CPA - Response

Greetings all.. I have known many of you for many years, others of you have probably heard of my name or know someone that uses our Firm for taxes. Based on the recent news, I felt the need to tell you my side of the story, no BS, just the truth as I remember it and lived it.

As you may have read, I was forced to plead guilty to 1 count of racketeering. What did the government feel I had done? The definition used for racketeering in my case was “assistance given to a criminal organization.” Seems pretty general and it is. I prepared tax returns for the main character in the case (Owen Hanson), started roughly 3 LLCs (these were called “shell companies”) and advised him on business questions when he had them and controlled an investment account that he and many other clients put money into (never cash). How many of you have I started S Corps and LLCs for? I never would have any knowledge about what you actually do with the entity and any entity is a “shell company” until it has business in it. He had many businesses, real estate, construction and others, all legitimate. What I never did for him was accounting work or have any control or real knowledge of his business practices. I also never touched his money aside from the one wire for $150k from Australia, which is 100% of the prosecutor’s discovery showed as well. The reports of millions of dollars, shell companies, etc is greatly exaggerated. In fact, I never made even $1 off this ex client as he was a personal friend, leaving me perhaps the stupidest criminal in the world. After all, who breaks the law without a profit motive? Regardless, the government in crafting their case, needed an accountant to be controlling his businesses and I was the closest thing to fitting the bill. I want to state plainly that never, ever did I know he was involved in drugs in any way. Even the documents filed by the prosecutor plainly state there is no direct evidence from any source, giving any evidence that I was aware that there was drug money involved. All drug charges against me were dropped. Additionally, there was absolutely no charge made against the Firm or me for any of our tax practices. It was very narrowly focused on the actions I did for my ex client.

So you’ll no doubt ask, if you are so innocent why not fight and prove it? The sad but honest answer to that is that its almost not possible to fight the federal government in court. If you are aware of how the federal system works, you will know that the prosecutor has all the power. 98% of all federal cases end in a plea deal because the prosecutor can file dozens of new charges if a person proceeds to trial, simply endless variations of the original charge, making the risk of trial enormous. Cost would have been in excess of $1 million in attorney fees. There is also no way to prove a negative. How do I prove I did not know Owen was involved in illegal things? Its my word against theirs, with 12 people who couldn’t figure out how to get out of jury duty to decide my fate… no thanks. That is what this all comes down to, risk management. I have 2 young daughters, ages 7 and 9 when this happened. I can live with not seeing my kids for a few months to a year, I could not live with missing their childhood, which was a very real risk if I went to trial. So with a terrible taste in my mouth, I plead guilty and claimed responsibility for the actions that I had taken that I looked at as totally legitimate but the government saw in a different light. You’ll read that I was somehow the accounting mastermind behind this. I was not. I do not do accounting work. I do tax work, period. You’ll read that as part of my investment fund I wired money under a fake name. This is a twisting of words. I wired money for my client from Australia while there on vacation to my investment fund account under a business name, with the full permission of the Australian bank. You’ll read that I was involved in illegal sports gambling. Again wrong. The money I wired in Australia was from a sports betting business my client had in Australia. Sports gambling in Australia is legal and the proceeds were legal, check the internet on this fact if you are curious. You may also be aware that the federal government recently admitted that they do not have the right to regulate sports gambling in the US, that is a job for the states.

Anyone that knows me knows that I have supported the overseas community endlessly since 2001. You trust us because we have always backed up our words with actions. If you can find even one person out there who has negative things to say about our work, I welcome the information. Our Firm has become popular over the years completely through word of mouth because we have done a good job handling your tax needs without the misinformation and lack of service and high prices that many other Firms seem to specialize in. You trust us and have repaid that trust with your referrals. Nothing has made me happier than to be able to support you. And we will continue to support you. The Firm is not going anywhere. Business will proceed just as it always has. The article states that I have lost my CPA license. This is not true, feel free to check the CA licensing board website. The federal government does not regulate CPA licenses. This will be a separate conversation with the State of California and the outcome is unclear, but I can tell you regardless of their decision, a CPA license is not required to be the managing partner of the firm, nor does the lack of a license in any way take away the 25 years of knowledge I have gained. My point is, we are still here for you and your continued trust and support means the world to us and we will return the favor as always by treating you fairly. I have been the face of the business for a long time but the truth is the team behind the scenes does all the real work and know your situations as well or better than I do. I do not know completely what will happen to me. After appeals are exhausted I may be away for a few months and may get some combination of home confinement or work release. It took them 3 years to get to this point so I do know nothing will happen quickly.

I hope to hear from anyone that wants more details on this. I’ll always have access to my email, Luke@FSTaxGroup.com and I welcome any questions, thoughts or support. I’ll leave you with one final thing. The info below is the direct text of an email from Owen Hanson to the Judge on my case. It’s the exact truth. Unfortunately, the FBI and prosecutors do not care to see the truth in this letter in their blind quest to punish who they think is guilty. I’ll let you read it and decide for yourself whether I was fairly treated by our justice system.

Luke M. Fairfield

From: • HANSON, OWEN - CORRLINKS
letter
Jun 20, 2018 at 9:49 PM

June 15, 2018

333 W. Broadway
14th Floor
San Diego, CA 92101

To the Honorable William Q. Hayes,

My name is Owen Hanson and I am currently incarcerated at USP Lompoc. I was sentenced in your courtroom in December of 2017 to 255 months. I am writing this letter on behalf of co-defendant Luke Fairfield. I would like to tell you a bit about how I know Luke and his brother Eli Fairfield whom I considered my best friend. We met back in 2002 at the University of Southern California, where Luke would come to watch his brother play on the same volleyball team I was on. After I graduated college I continued my relationship with Luke as my accountant and some what of a mentor. He and his brother were two people I looked up to in life. I remember learning about the mortgage and development business right out of college through the Fairfield brothers. Luke always put his trust in me due to the fact that I was so close with his brother and even was a groom's man in his wedding. I've always known Luke to be a man of integrity, family orientated, and always willing to lend a hand to someone in need.

When I was indicted in 2016 on Racketeering charges, I was shocked to see Luke's name under mine. Luke has never intentionally been involved in my criminal activity. I am ashamed to say this, but I lied to Luke many times and kept him in the dark on how I was making my money. Back in 2011, when Luke was with me in Australia, I didn't tell him the entire truth and I regret that. I had told Luke the money I made was from Sports betting (which is legal in Australia). I know if Luke had any idea I was involved with drugs he would have never made the trip. Judge Hayes I took responsibility back in 2017 and I want to do it again as I write this letter. I am ashamed of my actions, but even more disappointed that I pulled other good people like Luke Fairfield into my criminal endeavors. I know that ignorance does not negate the fact that Luke is guilty of a crime; however my manipulation played a huge part in him being in the predicament that he is in today.

In closing, I want to make it clear to you that Luke Fairfield has never once accepted money from me. He has always provided his services as a friendly gesture. I have asked him many times "what do I owe you" and never once has Mr. Fairfield billed me for his valuable time. I feel he almost considered me as a younger brother since I would spend a good chunk of my time with his brother. Mr. Fairfield never asked me for money except for the yearly fees that were due/incurred for my corporations. I appreciate you taking the time to read my letter, and I pray Luke Fairfield will be back with his family on July 9, 2018.

Respectfully,
Owen M. Hanson
Lompoc, CA
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Old 8 October 2018, 13:18
LukeFairfieldCPA LukeFairfieldCPA is offline
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Luke again.. .if one of you with Moderator control felt that moving this post to the top of this thread and pinning it, I'd appreciate it.
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